Is blogging for business worth the effort?
The short answer is yes. There is no disputing the power of a well-crafted, compelling, and authoritative blog post. Businesses with blogs get 67% more leads than those that do not!
"Chances are, you're not the only one in your industry with an online presence," says Matt Brennan, contributor at Business2Community. "You're not the only technology company, landscaper, plumber or realtor. But, a blog offers you the opportunity to put your unique stamp on the issue."
If you're one of the thousands of businesses that have invested in a rigorous content marketing program, there are a few things that your blog must absolutely accomplish. For any growing enterprise, small business, or startup, meeting or exceeding these benchmarks will contribute to sustained marketing success!
Blogging for Business: 3 Tips to Acquire High-Value Customers
Unfortunately, blogging for business is easier said than done. Are you struggling to acquire high-value customers through your blog? Follow these simple tips attract more customers with your blog content:
Optimize for Search Engines
The first step towards building a high-converting blog is to optimize the content for maximum visibility. When it comes to search engine optimization, there are a few best practices every marketer should follow:
Optimize Every Post for Search
Every post should be optimized to perform well in search. The keyword you want the post to rank for should appear in the following items:
- The URL
- The Page Title
- The Meta Description
- The Opening Paragraphs
- The First Heading Tag (H2)
- The Image Alternate Tag
Focus on a Single Keyword
Blog content should be built around a specific long-tail keyword for which you would like to rank. Be sure to include the keyword in the title, introductory paragraph, anchor text, conclusion, title tags, meta description, and image alt text.
Build a Content Architecture
Your content should follow a specific, search-friendly framework starting with your target keyword. From there, build keywords around specific topic clusters. These topic clusters should support value-driven pillar pages.
Add Internal and External Links
Incorporating good internal links is an easy way to keep users on your site. Additionally, adding high-value external links can add some bonus authority to your blog.
Invest in Content Promotion: Consider allocating funds towards content promotion. Select an appropriate channel and run a limited paid campaign. Analyze campaign results and either add additional funds or pivot.
With a keen eye for this blog optimization best practices, businesses can unlock consider traction and growth. However, frequent optimization — checking and rechecking — is the key to sustained success!
Answer Customers' Questions
Secondly, businesses must use the blog to answer customers' questions. Even better, answer the questions that your competitors are too afraid to address. If there's a problem that your specific product or solution doesn't address, don't be afraid to talk about it. Moreover, take it a step further by pointing your readers to an alternative solution! Above all, try to be thoughtful and helpful.
Take a closer look at your target audience. What are your customers struggling to accomplish? Can you anticipate the kinds of questions that might have along the way? By exercising a bit of foresight, businesses can craft content that answers customers' questions; resonates with their beliefs; and addresses misconceptions, fears, or challenges.
"Perhaps the simplest (and maybe even most effective) way of figuring out what your customers want is to ask them. Don't be shy — more often than not they are more than willing to let you know what is on their mind. What's more, there are numerous avenues available for you to ask your customers what's bothering them," says Moz.
Build Trust With Customers
The most essential component of an engaging, thought-provoking, and lead-generating blog is its ability to build trust with customers. Most businesses use blogs to sell or set up the sell. Instead, the blog should be used to position, frame, and build the brand's reputation as a trusted expert.
"You need to create content that is transparent and honest," recommends Ryan Scott, head of inbound marketing at Lean Labs. "For example, instead of trying to make a sale, a car dealership blog could guide readers through the car buying process. Which dealership would you rather buy from? The one that tries to make a sale or the one that gives you all the information you need to get the best deal?"
Additionally, exercising a bit of disarmament is another easy way to build trust with customers. Don't try to oversell or position your business without fault. Instead, when you admit that your product/service might not be the best fit for everyone, it disarms the reader and helps to build trust.
"For example, if you're selling fiberglass and write an article about the pros and cons of fiberglass versus cement, the first thing you should do is let the reader know that your biased towards fiberglass," recommends Scott. "However, also show the reader instances where cement makes more sense."
Master Blogging for Business
As a brand manager or marketing expert at an enterprise, small business, or startup, your goal is to help the business acquire more customers. Fortunately, blogging is a quick and cost-effective way to build brand recognition, boost web rankings, and entice prospects into taking the next step in the buyer journey.
Are you ready to become a blog marketing champion? For exclusive and behind-the-scenes access to industry best practices and more, download our FREE ebook: Conquering the Inbound Marketing Mountain. In the guide, access all the important questions to consider when setting inbound goals; more profound insights into why and how you select persons; critical elements of the editorial calendar; and how to find the right inbound marketing content by committing to routine iteration.